Origin of shoeblack

First recorded in 1745–55; shoe + black Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for shoeblack

Historical Examples of shoeblack

  • Near at hand was seated a shoeblack, to whom he went to have his boots repolished.

  • The shoeblack consented, and a price was fixed upon and paid.

  • Doubleday,” he said, when that youth entered, “we want you to bring here a shoeblack.

    My Friend Smith

    Talbot Baines Reed

  • Do you resign the pen for the brush, to save your paying tribute to the shoeblack?

    Economic Sophisms

    Frederic Bastiat

  • Such an event as a shoeblack in South Audley Street was not to be passed by.


    Henry Kingsley

British Dictionary definitions for shoeblack



(esp formerly) a person who shines boots and shoes
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012